By Pastor Bruce K. Oyen
My subject is “Comfort for Christians.” It came to mind when a close friend told me of the serious health problems that one of his loved ones is having. So serious, in fact, that they could end the man’s life. Fortunately, this man and his family are Christians. Therefore, they know the strength and joy that God gives his children during their difficulties.
This leads to an important point: Christians are not exempt from difficulties. They often must cope with the heartaches common to all persons, whether they are Christians, or not. But the big difference is that Christians can count on God to help them through their trials, even if he doesn’t eliminate their trials. 2 Corinthians 1:3 -5 says this about our subject: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ.” (The quote from the New King James Version of 2 Corinthians 1 was taken from this website: www.biblegateway.com.)
God walks with his children every step of the way to heaven, which is their final destination.The heavenly destination of Christians helps them keep their heartaches in perspective. They know that no matter how difficult circumstances get, the difficulties are only temporary. They know that the old song is true: “This world is not my home, I’m only passing through. My treasures are laid up, somewhere beyond the blue.” It’s not just a cliche. For those who know the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior, “The best is yet to come!”
In his excellent book, “THE FINAL DRAMA,” theologian, pastor, and author, Dr. John F. Walvoord has a good chapter on the universal church, also known as the body of Christ, which is made up of all persons who have believed on the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior. Walvoord points out from the Bible some important things about God’s plan for Christians. Here is a quote from the end of this chapter: “The transcending fact is that all the saints (by which he means Christians) will be ‘with Christ’ and in His presence forever. Because God does all things well the experiences He has planned for us in heaven will be all that our hearts could wish. Friends and loved ones will be together forever and earth’s sorrows and problems will be no more. As Paul said, to be with Christ will be “far better” (Phil. 1:23) than any situation on earth could possibly be. Our struggles with sinful, deteriorating bodies will be past. In our new bodies we will have abounding health and strength. Heaven will be the ultimate paradise and no one will be able to find any room for improvement, for if a better eternity could be created, God would create it. The wonderful truth is that paradise could be ours momentarily for the Rapture may occur soon.” (By “the Rapture,” Walvoord means the time when Jesus Christ comes back to take all Christians to be with him forever in heaven.)
What Christians look forward to certainly can comfort them as they journey through this life with all its challenges, difficulties, and heartaches. If you are not a Christian and want to learn how to become one, click on this link to a brief but excellent article on the subject: http://www.godssimpleplan.org/gsps-english.html